Stamford’s Democratic Mayor and potential 2010 gubernatorial candidate Dannel Malloy was one of the Democrats pouncing yesterday on Republican Gov. M. Jodi Rell’s statement the newest budget proposal she unveils today will contain taxes.
Malloy continued the drum beat of criticism that when Rell proposed her initial two-year budget back in February, she low-balled the size of the deficit so it was the Democrats who had to be the first to propose tax hikes.
“Had the Governor done her job in February – which was to propose a balanced budget – all of this could’ve been avoided,” Malloy said in a statement. “What a waste of time, money and effort. What a shame.”
There is something to be said about the Rell administration’s continued reliance on lower deficit figures (in February it was about $6 billion, then a few months ago her budget office bumped their projection to $7.95 billion) even when the non-partisan Office of Fiscal Analysis was projecting a higher number ($8.7 billion).
As of now everyone is agreeing the deficit stands at $8.55 billion.
BUT Malloy failed to also point a finger at state legislators from his own party from lower Fairfield County and Stamford who slowed down the budget process by refusing to embrace Democratic leaders’ calls to raise the income tax. Why not wag a finger at them as well?
Like Rell they have continually stated that at the end of the day taxes might be necessary, but were not willing to talk specifics until convinced enough cuts had been made. And like Rell they have done so because they believe that is what the majority of the people who voted for them want. You know, those higher-income Fairfield County residents who have also helped keep Malloy in office for years.
It’s not unusual for Malloy, who might be facing off against Rell in 2010 (she hasn’t said whether she is running), to try and pin the blame for the protracted budget debate on his potential opponent. But it’s hardly that simple.